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When should you get a no annual fee credit card

Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 5:37:00 PM

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How often do you use your credit cards?

That should be the question you ask yourself whenever you're mulling a number of credit card offers in an effort to find the account that will work best for you. If the answer to that question is, "Not very often," you should try to find a credit card application that will allow you to get the greatest possible value out of your account, and that will likely include a

no annual fee credit card


These days, you will probably receive many offers for credit cards that carry a wide variety of features. These can include programs that allow you to earn some sort of rewards for every dollar you spend, balance transfer credit cards that allow you to reduce a sizable existing balance in a short period of time, and those that carry low ongoing interest rates. However, if you don't use your credit card very often, these accounts may end up being costly or unnecessary. Typically,

rewards accounts and those with low interest rates carry sizable annual fees

that will end up costing you money if your borrowing habits are responsible.

What should you look out for?

As opposed to a rewards, balance transfer or low interest rate account, you might want to opt for a card that carries no annual fee. The benefit of such an account is obvious: you will be able to

put it away for use in emergencies

or to make a large purchase, but not have to worry about the added costs that come with letting it sit in your wallet or a drawer.

Are there drawbacks to no annual fee credit cards?

In short, no credit card is without strings attached. If you have a no annual fee credit card that you don't use very often, your lender will want to make up some of the cost it might sacrifice to your spending habits by having a

higher ongoing interest rate

associated with the account.

As such, you should carefully consider your borrowing habits with relation to the charges you typically make. Though you use your account relatively little, how much might your repayment habits end up costing you as a result of the elevated interest rate?

When you're trying to apply for a credit card, you should always weigh a number of options to find the best deal available to you.

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